Tuesday, July 10, 2007

TCG Facts with a Bullet

Theatre Communications Group has released the Theatre Facts Survey and you can peruse it here.

Leonard Jacobs has the press realease at his blog. And Isaac is starting up discussion of it at Parabasis.

The Press release highlights some of the news, but here are some bullet points that also deserve some scrutiny:

  • Inflation-adjusted administrative salaries increased 14% and administrative benefits increased 36% during the five year period, leading to administrative salaries accounting for 1.3% more of expenses in 2006 than in 2002.
The TCG press release happily points out:

  • The majority of theatres’ employees are engaged in artistic positions, with an average workplace consisting of 62% artistic, 25% technical and 13% administrative personnel.

But couple that with this news:

  • Theatre's single greatest allocation for resources from 2002 through 2004 went to artistic payroll, and in 2005 and 2006 it shifted to administrative payroll. Average artistic payroll did not keep pace with inflation over the 5-year period...Artistic payroll as a percentage of total expenses has decreased each year since 2002.

  • Although growth in total ticket income over the past five years was 6.1%, it was not enough to keep pace with inflation; ticket income was down nearly 6% from 2002 to 2006 after adjusting for inflation.

  • Educational and outreach income increased steadily over the the five year period (2002-2006), rising nearly 13% above inflation. Despite this increase in income, fewer people are reached now by outreach and education activity than before.
The press release mentions the following:
  • Occupancy/building/equipment/maintenance costs increased each year, rising 34% above inflation over the 5 years.
But this is equally shocking:
  • Insurance costs escalated 61% above inflation over the 5 year period.
The press release ackowledges the following, but leaves out the point that though attendance went up 1.3 percent there are also more performances:
  • Overall attendance declined 8% while the total number of performances rose by nearly 2% over the 5-year period. Attendance slipped in 2003 and 2004 and regained some ground in 2005 and 2006.

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